By Richard Pagliaro | @Tennis_Now | Monday, November 20, 2023
No champion delivers dazzling encores quite like Novak Djokovic does.
World No. 1 Djokovic demolished home hero Jannik Sinner to capture his record seventh ATP Finals championship in Turin on Sunday.
Djokovic’s dominant weekend saw him sweep world No. 2 Carlos Alcaraz and No. 4 Sinner in succession to win his ATP-best seventh title of the season.
It was a superlative season that saw Djokovic win seven of the 12 tournaments he played, including claiming three of the four Grand Slam championships, secure his record-extending eighth season as year-end No. 1, collect his 98th career title and launch his 400th week as world No. 1.
So what does the 36-year-old Serbian superstar have planned for a 2024 encore?
“Well, you can win four slams and Olympic gold,” Djokovic told the media in Turin with a smile.
Given Djokovic’s 55-6 record this season and the fact he brought his best at the biggest events you can’t discount his run at the Golden Slam.
In 1988, Steffi Graf made history as the only player—male or female—to win the Golden Slam capturing all four major championships and the Olympic gold medal—the Olympic tennis event was staged after the US Open when Graf won gold—in the same season.
The Olympic gold medal is about the only top tennis prize missing from Djokovic’s trophy collection.
Testing Djokovic’s Golden Slam dream is the fact the 2024 Olympic tennis tournament will be staged on Roland Garros’ red clay in Paris.
A master of all surfaces, reigning Roland Garros champion Djokovic will face a rapid surface adjustment.
“[The Olympics] is definitely one of the major goals for next year, other than Grand Slams,” Djokovic told the media in Turin. “It’s going to be very congested schedule with going from the slowest to the fastest surface in sport back to the slowest. Clay, grass, clay, then hard court. Obviously that’s a very demanding, challenging stretch of the year.
“I’m going to have to speak with my team to see how we can plan out our preparations, training, so that I’m able to play my best tennis where I want to.”
The 10-time Australian Open champion will try to lead Serbia to another Davis Cup championship later this month. Djokovic has a lot to look forward to in 2024: he will aim to win a record-extending 11th Australian Open title and if he does he will claim his 25th major…